(MathPickle, 2018)

Students can tackle this puzzle when working on either counting or adding.

If students are practicing counting and don’t have addition skills they will find it more of a challenge to cover the canvas with blotches. Start with a 5×5 or 6×6 canvas and try covering it with the whole class before breaking children up into pairs.

If students are working on addition they should be expected to cover the canvas and show that there numbers add to the size of the canvas.

Here are the puzzle sheets.

Here is the full slide show.

Standards for Mathematical Practice

MathPickle puzzle and game designs engage a wide spectrum of student abilities while targeting the following Standards for Mathematical Practice:

MP1 Toughen up!

This is problem solving where our students develop grit and resiliency in the face of nasty, thorny problems. It is the most sought after skill for our students.

MP3 Work together!

This is collaborative problem solving in which students discuss their strategies to solve a problem and identify missteps in a failed solution. MathPickle recommends pairing up students for all its puzzles.

MP6 Be precise!

This is where our students learn to communicate using precise terminology. MathPickle encourages students not only to use the precise terms of others, but to invent and rigorously define their own terms.

MP7 Be observant!

One of the things that the human brain does very well is identify pattern. We sometimes do this too well and identify patterns that don't really exist.


Please use MathPickle in your classrooms. If you have improvements to make, please contact us. We'll give you credit 😉

Gordon Hamilton

(MMath, PhD)


Lora Saarnio